American Express has a wide variety of personal credit cards and charge cards, outlined on this page. For business cards, read our overview of Amex business cards.
Personal Charge Cards
On the high end, Amex offers several charge cards. A charge card is designed to be paid in full every billing period. These cards all have annual fees, and earn Membership Rewards® points.
They’re all geared around earning rewards on travel spending, especially when you book travel through the American Express Travel website (AmexTravel.com). Since they earn Membership Rewards® points, they also generally give you the most rewards value when you use points for travel expenses. These cards also tend to come with generous introductory bonuses if you spend a certain amount within the first few months of card membership.
|Card||Annual Fee||Points Per Dollar|
|Platinum Card (Review)||$550||
|Premier Rewards Gold Card (Review)||$195, $0 first year||
|Green Card (Review)||$95, $0 first year||
The main differences between these cards are in the rewards earning potential, and the Platinum is packed with additional benefits beyond rewards. Both the Premier Rewards Gold Card and Green Card have a $0 introductory annual fee. On the lowest end of these cards, the Green Card is the only one that has a foreign transaction fee.
The Platinum Card is clearly designed for the most frequent travelers. It comes with a $200 airline fee credit, and access to Amex’s global lounge collection, which includes several brands of airport lounges. Another benefit is the Fine Hotels & Resorts program, which offers complementary perks at hotels around the world. The Platinum Card also comes with Uber VIP Status and $200 in statement credits good for Uber rides in the United States.
Personal Credit Cards
There are two families of American Express personal credit cards, with two cards in each:
- Blue Cash cards, which earn cash back
- EveryDay cards, which earn Memebership Rewards® points
These cards are mostly designed to earn rewards for spending at supermarkets, gas stations, and a few other categories. All of these cards have 2.7% foreign transaction fees.
Blue Cash Cards: For Cash Back
There are two cards in the Blue Cash family. They earn cash back rather than Membership Rewards® points, with higher cash back at U.S. supermarkets, U.S. gas stations, and some U.S. department stores.
|Card||Annual Fee||Cash Back|
|Blue Cash Preferred (Review)||$95||
|Blue Cash Everyday (Review)||$0||
EveryDay Cards: For Membership Rewards Points
The two EveryDay cards earn Membership Rewards® points, and offer bonus points for using the card frequently. The American Express EveryDay card is the only American Express card with no balance transfer fee, which is relatively uncommon among credit cards in general, but can be found on several other cards that are favorable to balance transfers.
|Card||Annual Fee||Points Per Dollar|
|EveryDay Preferred (Review)||$95||
Co-Branded Credit Cards
American Express partners with many different companies to offer co-branded cards. They have several hotel cards designed for spending at Hilton that earn Hilton Honors points, and a Starwood Preferred Guest card for spending at Starwood and Marriott hotels. They also offer a range of airline cards with Delta that give you bonus miles if you spend a certain amount within a few months of account opening.
|Hilton Honors Aspire||$450||
|Hilton Honors Ascend (Review)||$95||
Starwood & Marriott Hotels
If you stay at Starwood or Marriott hotels frequently, these cards can be very valuable.
There’s a wide range of Delta-branded cards that will give you extra points on each Delta purchase you make. The lowest-end Blue Delta SkyMiles card is the only one with no annual fee, but also the only one with a foreign transaction fee. The highest-end card, the Delta Reserve, comes with lounge access and extra benefits. The main difference among these cards is rewards-earning potential.
|Card||Annual Fee||Foreign Transaction Fee|
|Platinum Delta SkyMiles (Review)||$195, $0 first year||None|
|Gold Delta SkyMiles||$95, $0 first year||None|
|Blue Delta SkyMiles||$0||2.7%|
This card is designed for people who plan on buying or leasing a Mercedes-Benz car. Otherwise, there are probably better credit card choices.
About American Express
American Express, also known as Amex, offers a variety of credit cards and charge cards. Their many rewards cards are generally designed for people with great credit. If you’re looking for a new card, American Express may have one that’s a good fit for you. Most American Express cards have an annual fee, but a few don’t. Some have foreign transaction fees.
Amex is known for excellent customer service compared to other credit card issuers. In 2017, they placed first in J.D. Power’s annual Credit Card Satisfaction Survey. Since this annual survey started in 2007, American Express has always come in either first or second.
Many American Express cards earn Membership Rewards® points. These can be redeemed for gift cards, or they could be transferred to a partner loyalty program as airline miles or hotel points. They can also be redeemed for statement credits, but you’ll get less value per point if you redeem that way.
American Express also offers a strong lineup of business credit cards and charge cards. These small business cards are marketed under the OPEN brand. If you’re interested in those, check out our overview of Amex business cards here.
American Express may provide some of the following features with their cards:
- Complimentary ShopRunner Membership: Provides free two-day shipping and returns at participating online retailers.
- Purchase Protection: If an eligible item you buy is lost or damaged, you can get reimbursement as a card member.
- Extended Warranty: Eligible manufacturer’s warranties can be extended by a certain amount.
- Global Assist Hotline: Call for help when traveling 100 miles or more from home.
- Travel Accident Insurance: Provides coverage in case of an accident while traveling by common carrier.
- Car Rental Loss and Damage Insurance: Provides coverage for rented vehicles against collision damage and theft, as long as the rental company’s insurance is declined.
- Fraud Protection: You won’t be held liable for fraudulent purchases made to your card account (contact customer support immediately if you suspect fraud).